As there currently is nothing interesting to report from the franconian birdlife, I come back once again to my Norfolk holidays in early August (see here for part 1). This post features my birding experience on Blakeney Point, an oddly shaped peninsula next to the Cley Marshes. According to my guide this place must be a unique location to find rare migrants in the autumn and hosts furthermore a large mixed tern colony. Despite the fact that August is neither a good time for migrants nor for breeders, I decided to give this place a chance.
I started once again from the bus stop at the Cley Marshes and walked the first and last mile on asphalt to the sea. From this point on there is no real path anymore but only the shingle beach,
which you have to follow for the next four miles to the information centre of the reserve. This proved to be a monotonous and ardeous walk that took almost 1 1/2 hours each way.
Of course this can't discourage the avid birder, though it was a bit disappointing for me that I actually saw so few birds.
But now we focus on the birds rather than on the walk: Right from the beginning I spotted some terns flying along the coast line. The most were without doubt Sandwich and Little Terns, that were still carrying food for their juveniles. Unfortunately, they were too fast and far away for my camera so that I never got really good shots.
The next birds to come were a couple of waders which were feeding on the beach. Here I saw my first ever Bar-tailed Godwit, still in its beautiful breeding plumage. Having paused there for a while I resumed my walk and came soon afterwards across a couple of Red Knots, Oystercatchers and a Turnstone, also still in breeding plumage.
Not far from the last waders I finally caught sight of the blue lifeboat house, which is now the information centre of Blakeney Point. Ten minutes later I reached the latter via a small path through a bushy area. Although there were of course no rare migrants waiting for me there, I enjoyed the sight of several Linnets and Meadow Pipits. Unfortunately the walk had taken me so long that I had to turn around immediately afterwards and no time for the tern colony.
Already on the way back I eventually heard some very excited calls from above. I raised me head and could observe how a Peregrine was driven away by a group of Little Terns. After the falcon had finally come out of sight I finally resumed my walk to the bus stop at Cley. This was definitely the highlight of today!